By Lindsay Toler
By Chad Garrison
By Brett Koshkin
By RFT Staff
By Lindsay Toler
By Riverfront Times
By Danny Wicentowski
By Pete Kotz
News Real, May 17, 2007
Those who cannot remember the past...: Regarding Chad Garrison's "Bring Back Juneteenth!": A couple of years ago the state of Missouri decided not to pay for crutches, wheelchairs, eyeglasses or hearing aids for the poor and disabled. To expect the state to pay for a $2 million party for an event that happened in Galveston, Texas, on June 19, 1865? If black athletes and the Black Caucus have already paid for it, the fact must be documented before the state diverts those funds to other purposes. Abraham Lincoln said as much in a debate with Stephen Douglas — that he opposed a system where one man would earn his bread and another man eat it. Missouri's Civil War history was different from Texas'. A March 1861 Missouri convention elected to stay in the Union. On May 10, 1861, Nathaniel Lyon led about 1,000 federal troops from the Marine Hospital and Jefferson Barracks and about 7,000 Union Home Guard volunteers to Camp Jackson on what is now the Saint Louis University campus to surround about 900 Missouri Guard militia and force its commander, Brigadier General Daniel Frost, to surrender. The Missouri Guard militia were soon paroled. "Though often strained, Missouri's bond with the Union held up for the duration of the war," writes Christopher Phillips in Damn Yankee: The Life of General Nathaniel Lyon. Major General John C. Frémont, commander of the Federal Department of the West shortly after Lyon's death at the Battle of Wilson Creek, issued "an unauthorized emancipation proclamation for Missouri's slaves, which Lincoln himself was forced to rescind."
Juneteenth is a good excuse to party, but it is only a benchmark on the people's road to freedom. It should be a time to renew our effort to pass U.S. Rep. Jesse Jackson Jr.'s proposal that the Constitution be amended to guarantee U.S. citizens the right to vote.
A National Guard militia usually spends a week or two in camp sharpening its fighting skills when it is not federalized for U.S. service. Juneteenth should be something like that. Not just to celebrate how far we have come, but also to focus on how far we have to go.
Joseph Kuciejczyk, St. Louis Throw out the baby and the bathwater: The wrong question is being considered here. I say the question is: Why is there a Missouri Arts Council? Would art evaporate from our city and state without the use of force to fund it? Let's eliminate the tax on "non-resident professional athletes and entertainers" and let that money remain in the hands of those who produced it. I'm sure they know exactly the types of things they would like to fund much more than some politician in Jefferson City. Next let's eliminate the MAC. Problem solved. Now Curtis Faulkner can stop trying to get into my wallet.
Tim Jamison, St. Louis
Unreal, May 17, 2007
It might have been a better idea to write to parents and tell them to educate their kids on doing the right thing at the right time. Now it's a little too late. We are living in an oversexed world anyway. Eighteen years old now is equal to twenty-five years old back when. These kids might have something to teach us about how the prom world works. Just ask them next time.
Starion Cuka, south St. Louis County
Feature, March 9, 2007